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Instant Recap: Winnipeg Jets vs Chicago Blackhawks

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After a win last night, the Jets cruise into Chi-town for a contest against Toews, Kane & Co., but wound up beating themselves.

David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

After winning a cliffhanger against the Columbus Blue Jackets at home, the Jets climb aboard the Air Canada Jetz charter and made their way to Chicago.  The Blackhawks are coming off a disappointing loss against the Nashville Predators, and are looking to get back in the win column.  This is the second contest between the Jets and the Blackhawks in 5 days, so these two teams are very familiar with each other's recent play. A here we go...

1.  Tsk, tsk! - The discipline problems kinda continue, as Adam Lowry goes off for holding (looked like a can opener tripping to me.), which leads to a Johnathan Toews power play goal.  Then Mark Stuart then goes off for interference (looked like a legal play to me, but he went for the big hit again!  Ugh!).  Dustin Byfuglien had to take a penalty to break up a Marion Hossa shorthanded breakaway attempt late in the first.  3 penalties equals the potential of 6 even strength minutes that the team can use for offense, not for a  defensive scenario in penalty kills. Anyways, the one goal on the Lowry penalty means the Jets are playing catchup again as the first period ends.

2.  Hellebuyck gets the start! - Desipite giving up the one goal early in the game on the power play, Connor Hellebuyck stood his ground and shook it off.  Kudos to him, especially given the confidence of his head coach and team in a back to back situation.  Then things get a bit testy!  Tyler Myers skates with the puck to the Chicago blue line, and lets a ripper go, catching Corey Crawford high in the shoulder.  Nothing, right?  Not so fast.  About a minute later, the Hawks skate into the Jets zone on a 3 on 1 (WTF!), and Toews screams one off of Hellebuyck's mask after carrying the length of the defensive zone.  Oh yeah! Not two minutes later, the Jets scream one back at Crawford again that catches him high.  If you ever want to shake a goalie off of his game, ring a wrister or two off his melon.  It's a natural reaction to duck,  starts the mind games, and makes him think twice.

3.  Class Act! - Eddie Olczyk was interviewed by Dennis Beyak of TSN during the first intermission. His classic line "We're bringing the cup to Winnipeg!" from the Save the Jets rallies 20 years ago, still ring in my ears!

4. 3 Blackhawk penalties midway thru the game,  3 Jets power plays, 0 goals. - 'Nuff said.

5.  At 5 v 5, the Blackhawks have done a commendable job in cramming up the neutral zone and not allowing the Jets to enter the offensive zone with speed in order to get set up.  If the Jets do enter the zone, then there's always a Blackhawk's stick in the way when the shot is released.  Good defensive play by the Blackhawks.

6.  Dustin Byfuglien takes a holding/ roughing/ whatever penalty creating the 4th power play for the Blackhawks.  Patrick Kane makes Buff pay and scores.  2-0 Hawks halfway thru the 2nd on 2 power play goals.

7.  Alexander Burmistrov is knocked down leading to a 4th power play for the Jets, resulting in 1 shot on net, and no goals.  Double Ugh!

8.  At the end of the second period, the Jets give up a 2 on 1, leading to Hellebuyck  bailing them out.  Stuart then takes a roughing penalty (C'mon!), allowing the Hawks to finish the period on their 5th power play.

9.  After starting the third and killing off the Stuart penalty, the Jets shorten the bench, putting Lowry out with Ehlers and Burmistrov.  I personally like this line combo (see my instant recap comments from yesterday's game), and I wish we can see more of it, not only during desperate times.  The play also seemed to open up a bit, as the Jets have the heat turned up a bit.  Kudos to Hellebuyck for keeping the Jets in it, and Crawford for keeping the Jets out of it.

10.  Note to PoMo and Chuddy...only pair Chariot and Stuart together when absolutely necessary...like never!

11.  The Jets have more shots on goal in the first 10 mins of the 3rd period than the first 40 mins.

12.  Hooking on Hossa with roughly 6 mins left in the period.  A big fat zero shots on the power play.  Triple Ugh!

13.  Hellebuyck pulled with under 3 minutes to play for 6 on 5, but the gamble didn't pay off as the Jets fall 2-0.  The Jets essentially beat themselves as the power play did them in.

Until next week Jets fans.  Cheers!